Chandigarh admn clarifies, says mandatory to install alcometers, but test optional
Fresh order asks bars to educate consumers about availability of breath analysers through a display board and to spread awareness about hazards of drinking beyond permissible limits.punjab Updated: Sep 08, 2017 12:51 IST
A day after asking bar owners to install breath analysers and ensure that customers drink within the legal limit, the excise and taxation department on Thursday came out with a fresh order.
While keeping the installation of the device mandatory, the department has clarified that it’s a “self-regulation” measure and its up to the customers to undergo the test voluntarily before leaving the bar to check if they can drive back safely.
As per the Motor Vehicle Act, the traffic police are the only enforcement agency to check drunk driving and the excise and taxation department has no authority over it.
Deadline extended to 15 days
The department has also relaxed the deadline for installing the alcometers — meant to measure the alcohol content in a breath sample. Now, instead of seven days, its 15 days.
UT deputy commissioner Ajit Balaji Joshi said after a fortnight, the UT will start conducting inspections to ensure compliance.
The permissible limit of alcohol in blood is 30mg per 100 ml. In layman terms, one pint (330ml) of beer or a small peg (30 ml) of hard liquor will keep a person safe while driving.
The fresh order also asks the bars to educate consumers about the availability of breath analysers through a display board and to spread awareness about the hazards of drinking beyond permissible limits and driving thereafter.
Earlier in the day, Chandigarh Hospitality Association members also met the UT officials, including senior superintendent of police (traffic) Shashank Anand, to seek clarity on the issue. Association president Ankit Gupta said there was ambiguity in the orders issued on Wednesday. On or request, a clarification was issued.
The decision has been taken on the directions of UT administrator VP Singh Badnore, who in a high-level meeting last month asked the police to see if alcometers could be installed outside pubs and bars by the owners on voluntary basis.